The White House is making health officials run messaging about the coronavirus through…Mike Pence (TPM):
If you’ve been around for a few days watching the news you certainly know of Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. He’s been at NIH since 1968 and heading NIAID since 1984. Back in the early years of the AIDS epidemic he was often the guy in terms of getting real, factual information from the federal government. He’s someone who commands immense respect within the field and has a great record of explaining things to the public in a way that is candid, factual and useful.
Now we learn that the White House has apparently instructed Fauci not to speak publicly without prior sign-off from the White House about what he will say. And the person in charge of screening information, the one in charge of what federal officials say and don’t say, is Mike Pence. In a normal administration, some effort to coordinate message and make sure everyone is speaking consistently and clearly would likely make sense. But given what we have seen from the President and the White House so far it seems like a bad sign.
US stocks faced another sharp selloff on Thursday as worries about coronavirus mounted, with the three main indexes dragged into correction territory and on track for their worst week since the financial crisis.
The Dow fell up to 960 points Thursday before bouncing back a bit and briefly re-emerging from correction territory. The index has fallen more than 10% below its most-recent peak, putting it in correction, and was down 700 points, or 2.6%, mid-afternoon.
Good thing tomorrow’s not FRIDAY. Oh wait…
Meanwhile, Pence had time today to attend the CPAC asylum and film a public health update for the Hannity show, so it sounds like everything is fine.